Let me take a break from…

Let me take a break from the whole narration-of-birth to tell you a little bit about Kavya.

When she was first born, her eyes were very light grey-blue; lighter even than Kevin's. That didn't last, though -- within three hours, they had darkened tremendously. We had some trouble deciding what color they'd ended up, in part because for the first day or so, she barely opened them. But in the end, they seem to be a very dark brown, but with shades of dark grey and green and blue in them. Kevin said they look like very expensive granite countertops. (My mom thought this was the funniest comment ever; she laughed for a long time when I told her, and I suspect it will be repeated to many aunties. :-) According to the Mayo book, newborn's eyes often change up to six months or so after birth, so we have no idea what they'll be in the long run. Right now, they're beautiful -- dark and mysterious. I always wanted unusual eyes when I was younger -- I thought my own dark brown was pretty enough, but sort of boring. So I'm hoping she gets to keep these eyes. We'll see how it goes.

She has a nice head of hair -- not nearly as much as Zara, but Zara was extraordinary in the hair department. Kavya's hair is currently very dark brown, almost black, and incredibly soft and fine. It's straight right now, but again, it's unclear what it'll do over time. Kevin had white-blonde hair as a baby, which gradually darkened to its present dark gold color. His hair is straight and fine; mine is quite curly when short and noticeably thicker than his. We'll see what happens with hers. For now, though, it's nice that she has some hair. When I feel up to taking more photos, I'll post some with hair in them. The nurses keep putting her hat back on, but I can take it off. :-)

She has the sweetest little lips, shaped a lot like Kev's, I think. Definitely chubby cheeks and chin at the moment, which is good -- it makes her look nice and healthy. I like a fat baby, I do. Her body seems so little and fragile to us both; we're definitely worried that we'll accidentally hurt her as we try to shift her around from position to position. But so far, she seems to be surviving our inept maulings. Kavya is resilient.

Mostly, she's a very sweet, sleepy baby. I love lying down with her sleeping on my chest; Kev's been doing a lot of that too. You can stroke her soft head in that position with a fingertip. Is so adorable. She likes very much to be held (like every other baby in the world, I imagine), and while she's maybe a little more easily soothed by mommy, she quite likes having daddy hold her too. So far, she hardly cries, and only if there's something actually wrong. She does howl quite nicely when the nurses draw her blood, though. She sleeps a lot, though in the last day or two, she's also taken to actually trying to make eye contact with me or Kevin. We don't think her eyes track so well at this point, though.

It's lovely having her. Despite all the aches and pains of the surgery, my overwhelming feeling at first was just peace and serenity. That lasted through Friday and most of Saturday. Serenity and an ongoing astonishment that we had somehow managed to make this perfect little creature. And that we got to keep her -- for the last few years, I've found myself quite reluctant to give people back their babies when they let me hold them. This one, I don't have to give back to anyone. She's ours. A glowing sweet bewilderment.

By Saturday evening, some frustration was starting to kick in, sadly, because all that sweet sleepiness meant that she was not the most active eater in the world. Which led us to some anxiety, and to Sunday, which we will now rename 'Mary Anne's Weepy Day.' Of which more will be related, anon.

3 thoughts on “Let me take a break from…”

  1. If you’re breastfeeding her, and the not-so-active-eater thing is a reference to that whole latching-on-thing, I hope you have a good La Leche League jannisary around to teach proper technique, which is, roughly

    1. tickle baby’s lips with nipple until baby opens wide. No, no, not like that, REALLY wide. Wait for it… wait for it… keep tickling… there we go —

    2. GLOM baby’s mouth onto breast much more vociferously than anyone would have thought possible, startling those around you who must think you are a violent baby-suffocater.

    3. Bliss

    (It is quite amazing how difficult it is to get babies — most babies, I hear — to nurse. This is one of my favorite little observations about the interplay of biology and culture. You would think, in evolutionary terms, that this would be something that ought to be really easy for mom and baby to work out. Apprarently not, though — because, I presume, the vast majority of human and protohuman babies born in the last few million years were not born all alone, but in extended families with lots of babies around. In our fragmented, nuclear-family-ish culture where we don’t spend a lot of time watching each other breastfeed, we get a lot of hungry, pissed-off babies and a lot of despairing moms with sore nipples. This is good for Nestle.)

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